22 June 2021Actuarial & underwriting

Howden poaches three Marsh execs as it rapidly expands its presence in Australia

Howden has appointed Matt Bacon as chief executive officer (CEO) of Howden Australia as one of three appointments intended to expand its presence Down Under.

The broker also hired Stuart McKellar, who joins as head of commercial and affinity, and Nick Chubb, who becomes head of financial lines.

Bacon was formerly at Marsh, where he was the CEO of the Mercer Marsh benefits business for the Pacific region. Before that he was the CEO of JLT’s people risk consulting business for Australia and New Zealand.

McKellar and Chubb also join from Marsh. McKellar was previously deputy leader for corporate, commercial and affinity, while Chubb was deputy head of the financial and professional services (FINPRO) practice.

Howden Australia launched on March 1, 2021 and is focused on specialist industry and product segments such as financial lines, corporate risks, commercial and affinity, workers’ compensation, group risk and alternative risk transfer solutions.

Bacon said: “The team here in Australia have done a superb job in building a very solid foundation from a complete standing start at the beginning of the year. I am looking forward to working with such a talented group of people and rolling my sleeves up to help drive an accelerated but sustainable growth agenda. An agenda that encourages entrepreneurialism and empowers quick and agile decision making, whilst ensuring excellence on behalf of our clients, colleagues and insurer partners – the real ethos of what Howden is.”

José Manuel González, CEO of Howden Broking, said: “Australia has long been a key geographical target for us, and with the current environment of consolidation, now is our time. We have a proven track record of launching successfully into targeted geographies around the world and growing rapidly.”

David Howden, CEO of Howden Group Holdings, added: “Australia has been a key strategic market for the Group since we launched DUAL in 2004, and now the time is right for us to also enter the Australian market as a broker.”